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Chicago Dog Friendly Area (DFA) Tags, Permits and Parks

If you’re planning on taking your dog to a Chicago Dog Park or Dog Friendly Beach, make sure he’s wearing a Chicago Dog Friendly Area (DFA) tag. These tags verify that your dog’s vaccinations are up-to-date and that he has had a recent negative fecal test. If your dog isn’t sporting one of these tags and is using one of Chicago’s Dog Friendly Areas, you could be subject to a $500 fine.

Metropolitan Veterinary Center can issue a DFA permit and tag upon receipt of the following:

  • A current dog license issued by the City of Chicago, or proof that the dog has a current rabies vaccination
  • Examination within the past year for any communicable diseases including an examination of a stool specimen for internal parasites.
  • Current vaccination or titer if possible for Distemper, Hepatitis, Para-influenza, Parvovirus, and Bordatella (kennel cough) unless an exemption to this requirement has been granted by the Administrator upon the written recommendation from the Owner’s veterinarian.

Permits and DFA tags ($5/dog) are available for your convenience at Metro Vet.

After issuance of a permit, it is up to the dog owner to keep immunizations and records up-to-date. The dog owners must also agree to abide by the Chicago Park District Rules and Regulations of a Dog Friendly Area.

The Cook County Department of Animal and Rabies Control will enforce DFA rules and regulations and issue tickets to violators.

Dog Friendly Area Rules and Regulations:

  • Owners are legally responsible for their dogs and any injuries caused by their dogs.
  • Owners must remain with and watch their dogs at all times.
  • Dogs must be leashed prior to and upon leaving the DFA. Gates to the DFAs must remain closed except upon entering and exiting the DFA.
  • Owners must immediately clean up after their dogs. Owners who fail to clean up after their dogs are subject to a fine of up to $500.00 (City of Chicago Ordinance 7-12-420).
  • Dogs with a known history of, or who exhibit, dangerous behaviors are prohibited.
  • Dogs must be healthy, fully immunized, dewormed, licensed and comply with the Cook County Department of Animal and Rabies Control Regulation for Chicago Park District DFAs.
  • No dog will be allowed in a DFA unless it has a current rabies vaccination.
  • Dog owners are responsible for the monitoring and maintenance of the DFA.
  • No Food (human or dog food) is allowed inside the DFA
  • Owners or other responsible persons must have a DFA permit with them for each dog visiting the DFA.
  • DFA permits are valid from January 1 through December 31 each year.
  • Children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult; younger children must be closely supervised.
  • Only three dogs per person allowed.
  • Puppies under four months old and female dogs in heat are prohibited.
  • Failure to comply with the Cook County Department of Animal and Rabies Control Regulation for Chicago Park District DFAs can result in a fine of up to $500.00.

You can find further information including DFA park locations @ www.chicagoparkdistrict.com